Assam Tourism and Travel Guide

One of the largest of the Seven Sisters in Northeast India, Assam is a treat for your eyes. With the Brahmaputra River passing right through the state, Assam tourism is known for its rich wildlife and history. It is a destination that has attracted tourists from across the country and the world. Far away from bustling towns, there are unseen parts of Assam waiting to be explored. Stay amidst nature and experience some of the best wildlife encounters of Assam tourism in the national parks. Enjoy sunrises over lakes and indulge in Assamese cuisine for a memorable experience. Learn about the history and culture by visiting places such as Hajo, Rang Ghar and Kareng Ghar or try doing the local Bihu dance. Have a refreshing walk in the lush green tea plantations that are spread across in various pockets of the state. For a spiritual rejuvenation, visit the famous Kamakhya Temple. Don’t forget to take a trip to the world’s largest river island, Majauli, when exploring Assam tourism and meet the natives and get to know about their lifestyle up close. Spend a day going on a cruise of the Brahmaputra River and enjoy the picturesque landscape of the place. After you are done revelling in Assam tourism’s unprecedented beauty, head to the neighbouring states. Read this Assam travel guide to get all the relevant information to plan your trip.
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Best Places To Visit In Assam

Best Time To Visit Assam

The best time to enjoy Assam tourism is during winter, which lasts from October till March. The climate of Assam then is pleasant. The days are moderately sunny and nights cool, hence it is a good time to roam about Assam. However, Assam tourism welcomes travellers throughout the year, owing to its endless charm. During summer, the temperature can go up to 37 degrees Celcius between April and June. A large number of tourists choose Assam tourism for their summer holiday though, hence expect some crowds at the picnic spots in Assam. Monsoon, which lasts from July to September, is generally avoided. The rainfall that occurs here is heavy and can put a damper on your travel plans.

Top Attractions In Assam

Assam tourism has been well-explored and for good reason. Known for its wide-stretch of tea estates, an abundance of wildlife and unforgettable scenic beauty, the state is the best place to begin your adventure in the Northeastern corner of the country. From bustling cities and dense forests to offbeat destinations, Assam tourism has a number of places on offer. This Assam travel guide includes the best of the must-visit places in the state that you should consider adding to your itinerary. Be assured that wherever you go from the places listed in this Assam travel guide, the people you meet will always be kind and welcoming.

Guwahati

The capital of Assam, which is also known as the gateway to the Northeast, is where most people will begin their exploration of Assam tourism. It is well connected with the rest of the country and is thus the place most people find themselves when heading to the Northeast. Settled on the banks of the Brahmaputra River, Guwahati’s central areas offer a spectacular view of the expansive waterbody. Some parts of the city around the river capture the simplistic charm that many travellers are looking for in Assam tourism. Another cornerstone of Assam tourism that draws tens of thousands of people to the state is also located here – the Kamakhya Temple. A holy place situated atop the Nilachal Hills, the Kamakhya Temple, Assam is especially full of devotees and pilgrims from all over the country during the Ambubachi Mela in June. Apart from this, the city has a few other temples that are popular stops on a trip of Assam tourism, such as the Umananda Temple and Navagraha Temple. Due to the increasingly young crowd of the city owing to the new educational institutes, the liveliness has increased. 

 

Kaziranga National Park

Kaziranga National Park should be an unmissable spot in your Assam tourism itinerary. It consists of the largest number of the one one-horned rhino on the planet. It is also one of the biggest tiger reserves in the world. A treasure trove of exotic flora and fauna, it has also been recognised as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1985. This national park on offer by Assam tourism is not only a magnificent place to explore as a traveller but has also been an exceptional site of wildlife and environmental conservation. Its location, which is only five hours away from the capital of the state, makes it a convenient destination to stop by in Assam tourism. Situated on the floodplains of Brahmaputra River, the area is densely populated with vegetation and animals. Its hallmarks include marshlands, elephant grass and broadleaf forests. Among the animal kingdom, the national park is home to species such as the one-horned rhino, Asiatic elephants, wild water buffalo, leopards and Royal Bengal Tigers. The avifauna here is remarkable as well, indigenous as well as some species migrating from the north. While bird-watching, you might spot the black-nested stork, the lesser white-fronted goose, the great Indian hornbill, wreathed hornbill, ferruginous duck and Baer's pochard duck among others. The activities here are some of the best that Assam tourism has in store for visitors. Wildlife safaris (both during the day and night) and elephant rides are some examples of that. It is important to maintain your own and the wildlife’s safety while you’re here. For this reason, hiking is not allowed within the national park. 

 

Jorhat

You will find Jorhat recommended in most Assam travel guides. Known as the tea capital of India, it is a key destination to fully experience Assam tourism. It is the second-largest city in the state with tea plantation as its top agricultural activity. Besides being the centre of the economy of the city, the tea plantations here are the main attraction of Assam tourism as well. The perfectly lined tea plants across vast areas award a natural calmness to the city. Some travellers find Assam tourism to be the most impressive here, owing to the hundreds of plantations in Jorhat. The oldest one is the Cinnamora Tea Estate, which was established by the British in 1850. It is well maintained and still open to visitors. Jorhat is an important place within Assam tourism also because of its rich culture and history. For example, the Dhekiakhowa Bornamghar is considered to be the most ancient and holy place to visit under Assam tourism welcoming thousands of devotees every year. Some other attractions here include Thengal Bhawan, Raja Maidam and Gibbon Wildlife Sanctuary. People head to Jorhat to head to another core attraction of Assam tourism – Majuli. The river island is only 20 kilometres away from Jorhat and can be visited via ferries. 

 

Majuli

One of Assam tourism’s highlight is Majuli. It is the world’s largest river island, inviting curious travellers from across India and other countries. It is also the first island to be made a district in India. The place is home to some tribes such as the Deoris, Sonowal Kacharis and Misings, and so the visitors will find the culture to be unique and immersive. It is unsurprising then, that the place is also known as the cultural capital of the state. The natives celebrate each festival with pomp and frills. If you are visiting the island during the festival Majuli Raas Mahotsav that takes place sometime in October or November, you will be mesmerised by the richness of the culture and feel like a local yourself due to the warm hospitality of the natives. Majuli is also one of the top places nominated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Although this place is one of its kind, it is a disconcerting matter that the island has been gradually disappearing due to soil erosion and flooding. It is estimated that the place may completely disappear in the next two decades. So, stop putting off your trip of Assam tourism!

 

Silchar
On the outskirts of Assam, bordered by Manipur, Mizoram and Bangladesh, Silchar is one of the best places to visit for a relaxing holiday. Known as the Island of Peace by the former prime minister of India, Indira Gandhi, Silchar earns its reputation as a tranquil destination due to its natural beauty as well as socio-political stability. Assam tourism holds it up as one of the most developed towns in all of Northeast. It has its own airport and is home to a number of renowned institutes for higher education. Many of the travellers visiting Silchar, also known as the Barak Valley, head to the neighbouring states of Manipur and Mizoram from there when done exploring Assam tourism. The population of the city is diverse – the majority consists of Bengalis and other communities include Bishnupriya Manipuri, Dimasa Kachari, Manipuri, Marwaris, Assamese and some tribal groups like the Nagas. 

 

Hajo

Assam tourism is often chosen by people of faith, and Hajo is one of the prime locations that devotees visit. It is an ancient site of pilgrimage on the banks of Brahmaputra River, frequented by people with different religious beliefs. The unique thing about the place is that it attracts Hindus, Muslims as well as Buddhists. Here, you will find sacred places dedicated to Buddha, Hindu gods and goddesses such as Durga, Shiva, Vishnu and a number of Islamic saints. The most popular temple here is the Hayagriva Madhava Mandir. Many followers of Buddha also pay a visit to this temple as it is believed that Buddha attained Nirvana here. Powa Mecca Mosque is another important place to visit. Hajo is the holy place in Assam tourism where religious faiths and cultures come together to create a safe and harmonious environment. 

 

 

Activities And Things To Do In Assam

While there are countless places to see under Assam tourism, the state also offers many interesting things to do to keep you engaged throughout your trip. We have put together a number of fun things to do in this Assam travel guide that will make your experience of Assam tourism unforgettable. The state can be visited and enjoyed by all kinds of tourists – solo travellers, families, couples and groups. Therefore, we have mentioned the best activities in this Assam travel guide that will appeal to you no matter what your travel style is. From delving into nature to immersing yourself in the culture, go through our recommendations in this Assam travel guide to add to your Assam tourism itinerary. 

 

Visit the tea gardens

The tea plantations are among the top attractions of Assam tourism. These gardens sprawl all over the state but the ones in Jorhat are dense and exceptional. The place has more than a hundred tea estates, including the oldest one in Assam’s history which was established in the 19th century. Stroll along the rows of tea plants, admire the greenery and try the local tea at the estates as well. The picturesque gardens must be visited by enthusiasts of photography, apart from anyone who would like to have a relaxing time amidst nature between their other busy sightseeing spots. 

 

Explore the wilderness

Apart from having vast expanses of tea gardens, Assam tourism also boasts of its viridescence through its national parks. Assam tourism has five national parks that you can visit – Kaziranga National Park, Dibru Saikhowa National Park, Rajiv Gandhi Orang National Park, Manas National Park and Nameri National Park. They’re all beautiful reserves where rare species of flora and fauna flourish. Exploring the wildlife found in these national parks rank high on most travellers’ Assam tourism itinerary and you should consider planning a visit too. The most popular of these reserves is the Kaziranga National Park, already mentioned above in this Assam travel guide, as it is home to the one-horned rhino. Other than that, Manas National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a beautiful place to visit packed with diverse flora and fauna. It is home to over 25 endangered species. The Dibru Saikhowa National Park is another great addition to this list, especially known for the Gangetic River Dolphins’ sightings during the boat safari. Nameri National Park shares its boundaries with the Pakhui Wildlife Sanctuary in Arunachal Pradesh and is a haven for admirers of avifauna. Orang National Park, apart from having many animals, is popular for hosting more than 50 species of fish. Spend a few days shrouded by thick forests when you choose Assam tourism to detox and be one with nature. 

 

Attend the festivals

Assam tourism is memorable owing to its rich culture and heritage. When planning a trip, try visiting the state at a time when you can participate in its festivities. Assam’s population consists of various tribes, and so the celebrations for their own festivals continue year-long and differ from one another. The events here are marked with vibrancy and employ unique traditions and customs that locals generally invite you to partake in with warmth. Bihu is considered to be the most important and vibrant of all the festivals that draw people to Assam tourism. The festivities occur sometime in April to mark the beginning of the harvest season and the celebrations end up going on for an entire month. You will find locals donning cultural attires, dancing together, singing folklores and preparing communal feasts. Other than Bihu, tourists from different corners of the country come together to attend the Ambubachi Festival at Kamakhya Temple, Assam every monsoon. Celebrated sometime in June, the festival spans over four days and observes the practice of Tantra, a subculture that is prevalent in Assam. This festival is dedicated to observing the menstruation of Goddess Kamakhya. Many fairs and stalls are put up around the temple and the celebration is a unique sight to behold. Some other festivals that you should consider centring your trip of Assam tourism around are the Karam Puja festival celebrated between mid-August and September, Majuli festival celebrated in November and the tea festival in Jorhat also celebrated in November. The Dehing Patkai festival that is held in January is organised by the government of Assam itself to showcase the spectacular culture that boosts Assam tourism. Indulging in these festivities allow you to get a closer experience of the local life and will significantly enhance your trip of Assam tourism. 

 

Go to the temples

Assam is rooted in its mythical history and has many temples that date back to the medieval era of the state. A large chunk of visitors who choose Assam tourism are devotees who have come on a pilgrimage. If you are a person of faith or simply appreciate splendid architecture and sites of cultural rejuvenation, head to the temples of Assam. The Kamakhya Temple, Assam is the most visited of all temples in the region. Besides that, if you are temple-hopping, add the following temples to your itinerary: Negheriting Shiva Doul, Siva Dol, Kedareswara Temple, Asvakranta Temple, Dhekiakhowa Bornamghar, Basistha Temple, Bhairabi Temple, Umananda Temple, Ugra Tara Temple, Maha Bhairav Temple, Tamresveri Temple, Navagraha Temple and Sukreswar Temple. There are many more temples not mentioned in this Assam travel guide, but these should be enough, to begin with! While exploring the cities, you may come across many local temples yourself!

 

Embark on a cruise on the Brahmaputra River

When in Assam, if you are drawn to the mighty Brahmaputra River, you can experience it from up close. You can go on a cruise in the evening to watch the sunset from the soothing waters of the river. The journey on the cruise offers you several spectacular views. It is a thrilling experience that should not be missed if you can help it. The cruise is available in two ways – upstream and downstream. The former begins from Guwahati. Keep in mind to carry your own camera. 

Where To Stay In Assam

As Assam tourism is the most popular in the Northeast and often the most visited of the Seven Sisters, you will find plenty of accommodation options in the state. From budget to luxury, there are a number of hotels that offer sufficient high-quality amenities for a comfortable stay. In some of the offbeat destinations that are still an obscure part of Assam tourism, finding luxury stays can be difficult. Hence it is recommended to research the places you have decided to visit on your Assam tourism trip to find the best accommodations. This Assam travel guide lists down some preferred stays that you should consider for your sojourn when in the state.

 

Luxury hotels under Assam tourism 

  • Novotel: 5 Star Hotel, Guwahati
  • Vivanta Guwahati
  • Radisson Blu Hotel, Guwahati
  • Padmini Resort, Tinsukia
  • IORA The Retreat, Kaziranga

 

Mid-range hotels under Assam tourism

  • Rains Inn, Guwahati
  • Hotel Hornbill, Guwahati
  • Hotel Rajmahal, Guwahati
  • Prashanti Lodge, Bhalukpong
  • Dibrugarh Club House

 

Budget hotels and hostels under Assam tourism

  • Hotel Greenland, Guwahati
  • Hotel Kalash, Tezpur
  • La Lolat Eco Camp, Majuli
  • Tesco Resort, Kaziranga

 

Some of the best hostels that are part of Assam tourism are:

  • Gibbon Backpackers Hostel, Guwahati
  • Transit Backpacker Hostel, Guwahati
  • Debojani Ashralaya Travellers Hostel by OK North East, Guwahati

Cuisine And Best Places To Eat

The cuisine of Assam elevates the experience of Assam tourism. The method of preparation is unique and combines the cooking style from the hills and that of plains, meaning that both the process of fermentation and drying as well as utilisation of fresh vegetables are followed. Rice is the staple that the other dishes complement. Owing to the cultural diversity of the region, the food presents a conglomeration of influences as well in the ingredients and flavours. The cuisine makes abundant use of both vegetables and animal products but very few spices. When upon a culinary journey of Assam tourism, travellers generally try dishes such as khaar, a dish made with meat, raw papaya, pulses and taro, the duck meat curry, maasor tenga, a tart fish curry, aloo pitika, a simple addition to a plate of rice and dal and ou khatta, a chutney made of jaggery and elephant apple to enhance your meal. 

 

There is no dearth of eateries in Assam where you can find the best of the lip-smacking Assamese cuisine. We have put together some of the best places to eat while exploring Assam tourism below in this Assam travel guide. You can dine on the local delicacies or go for some familiar cuisines based on your preference. 

 

  • Paradise Restaurant, Guwahati
  • Gam’s Delicacy, Guwahati
  • Saffron, Jorhat
  • Kalash, Tezpur
  • Gardenia, The Fern Residency, Tezpur
  • Tai Tou Maet, Tinsukia
  • Nawab Restaurant, Silchar

How To Travel In Assam

The public transport is well-developed and thus it is fairly easy for travellers to visit the different places on their Assam tourism itinerary. Through the cities and between different destinations within the state, buses run by the Assam State Transport Corporation or other private companies ply regularly. Taking the bus is the cheapest option for commuting. Rickshaws, E-rickshaws, auto-rickshaws, shared taxis and vans and ferries are common ways to travel within the state as well. In the cities, you can also book cabs from apps such as Ola and Uber. You can also rent a vehicle or travel by train or flight if your trip of Assam tourism includes multiple places in different corners of the state.

Typical Costs In Assam

Travel to the Northeastern states can be a bit pricey, but since Assam is well-connected to the rest of the country and is well-developed, you can plan a budget trip to the state as well. The bulk of the amount spent is on accommodation, therefore, choose according to your own spending limits. Due to Assam tourism’s popularity, many cheaper options for accommodation have sprung up. A budget trip to Assam could cost you anywhere between Rs 2,000 to Rs 3,500 per day, including accommodation. The whole trip can be wrapped up in less than Rs 20,000 if you do not unnecessarily splurge. Meanwhile, Assam tourism also has some lavish itineraries on offer to travellers. The cost of a luxury trip solely depends on your desire and ability to shell out money and has no limit.

FAQs

How many days do I need to explore Assam tourism?

To properly cover all the important places under Assam tourism, you should take at least five days. Keep in mind that travellers often prefer heading to the neighbouring states when they are done with Assam. If you would like to go to Meghalaya, Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, West Bengal or any of the other places surrounding Assam, take a few extra days with you. The beauty of all of Northeast India is impeccable and untouched, so you should try to explore as much as possible in a single trip. 

 

What are the things I should pack for a trip to Assam?

Assam in summer can be sweltering and frigid during winter. Hence, what you pack depends on the season you are visiting Assam. It is advisable to always carry a few warm articles of clothing as some areas in the state will be cool even during summer. Otherwise, in the months from April to June, carry loose clothes made of cotton to wear during the day while sightseeing. 

 

Suggest three tips for planning a trip to Assam.

Three things that you should keep in mind while planning a trip to Assam are as follows.

  1. Research the accommodation of a place beforehand as every destination will not offer the highest quality or luxury that you might be expecting. 
  2. Try to include the neighbouring sister states of Assam in your trip as they are easily accessible from the state and will not take too much time for you to pay a visit.
  3. Plan your trip around some festivities in Assam, if possible, to better delve into the culture of the state.

 

Which are the lesser-known places to visit in Assam?

Assam tourism welcomes a lot of tourists each year, but there are some amazing places that have been missed by travellers. Some of them include Panimur Falls, Sibasagar, Digboi, Haflong and Umananda Island. 

 

How do I reach Assam?

The state’s impressive connectivity has greatly contributed to the boom of Assam tourism. While travelling from other corners of India, the most convenient way to reach the state is by taking a flight. There are airports in Guwahati, Silchar, Dibrugarh and Tezpur. The Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport in Guwahati has the most number of airlines operating and connecting to more cities than the rest. Other than airway, you can also take a train to Assam. The state has 259 railway stations and is connected to all the major cities of India such as New Delhi, Mumbai, Calcutta, Bangalore, Cochin, and Chennai. The significant stops within Assam are Guwahati, Jorhat, Goalpara, Dibrugarh, Nagaon, Silchar, Tezpur, and Golaghat. The road conditions of the state are incredible as well. It consists of several national highways. Therefore, you could undertake a road trip by driving yourself, rent a vehicle or take a bus to reach Assam too. 

 

Is Assam tourism safe?

The Northeastern states are famous for being safe. It is vital that you are cautious and take precautions but there is nothing else that you need to specifically worry about. Should you fall in trouble, the state is inhabited by some warm and kind people who would help you. 

 

Can I travel to Assam without knowing the local language?

There are a lot of languages spoken in Assam, mainly Assamese. However, you do not need to worry about language barriers while travelling there. Most people have a good understanding of English and Hindi, and you will be able to find your way through the state without much trouble. 

 

Written by Shruti Mishra, an in-house writer at Tripoto. She feels most at home on the road and finding intriguing stories in the mundane is her forte.